Much like in baseball, softball players have a number of options to score scholarships outside of their intended college programs. Summer leagues are a particularly good source if you play in one or have played in one, and also a good place to gain exposure if you are going for a college-funded award. Many of these local scholarships look beyond talent if they consider it at all, and instead take into account academic achievements, financial need, extracurricular activities outside of softball, community service, and overall character.
Most of the larger schools also have scholarship funds offered by alumni who have played on their college team, and funding dedicated to drawing talented softball players to that college. College-based funding is regulated by an outside organization like the NCAA, so eligible players will need a minimum GPA in addition to a proven track record on the field.
Check out some examples of how to find softball scholarships below. For additional information about awards based on different criteria, try conducting a free college scholarship search at Scholarships.com.
About $1 billion in full and partial athletic scholarships are awarded each year by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) to more than 126,000 undergraduate student-athletes at Division I and Division II schools. Although these scholarships are awarded and administered directly by each academic institution, not the NCAA, you’ll be required to meet the requirements of the NCAA to receive any funding. Those requirements include a minimum GPA for both the college-bound and those already on campuses, and qualifying standardized test scores. Contact your intended school’s athletic department for more information if you have the academics and the skill to play on a college team.
If you plan on playing softball in college, whether on a varsity team or on the club level, your intended college could have funds and endowments set up by alumni who played the sport before you ever set foot on that campus or in honor of relatives and important figures to your school. Southeastern Community College in Iowa, for example, awards the Marion Schmidt Softball Scholarship. Students who have signed a letter of intent to play softball on the school’s team and maintain a 2.0 GPA for freshmen and 2.2 GPA for sophomores are eligible. Make sure you do your research, and talk to your financial aid office and athletic departments about local and college-based awards you could be eligible for.
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